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Adaeze Ibik

posted Mar 13, 2019, 2:06 PM by Margaret Ikape   [ updated Mar 15, 2019, 2:52 PM ]

Adaeze is an alumna of the 2013 and 2015 WAISSYA program.  Her passion for astronomy was sparked as a third year student at the University of Nigeria in Nsukka.  She knew she liked chemistry and physics and hadn’t really thought about astronomy until she took an introductory course her third year.  This course inspired her to join the amateur astronomy club.  This club grew her interest in observing in the universe and an interest in outreach.  In subsequent years, she has initiated outreach events to high schools and colleges and partnered with scientists so other students can be aware of astronomy as a field earlier than she discovered it for herself.

Adaeze attended WAISSYA for the first time right after finishing undergraduate degree.  She loved the inquiry mode of teaching and it’s something she integrates in her teaching methods in her current role teaching college physics and in outreach events.  She explains, “Inquiry makes you think.  As you are thinking, you are learning.  Before you know it, you can do it”.  She laughs and adds, “The teaching at WAISSYA made us look like good scientists and we felt like we could do it.  That was cool”.

She said the friends and mentors she made at WAISSYA helped influence her decision to pursue a master’s in astrophysics at the University of Nigeria.  She is currently waiting to defend her thesis on pulsars as she applies to doctoral programs at prestigious universities, which have access to observational telescopes.  She says that applying to programs and looking for jobs at academia can be a long and difficult journey.  However, people she met at WAISSYA have provided a strong support network to bounce ideas off of, assist with applications and help her stay motivated.  She believes that “what belongs to you will come to you at the right time. So be patient, keep trying and keep pushing”.  WAISSYA is an example of a great program, which led to other international opportunities like attending the 39th International School for Young Astronomers (ISYA) at Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in 2017 and the Dunlap Institute Summer School on Astronomical Instrumentation at University of Toronto, Canada in 2018.  In the meantime, she shares her passion for astronomy and physics with her students at Pathfinder College, Ibadan and Queen of the Rosary secondary School, Nsukka, Nigeria.


                                                                                                                                                    Written by Kathleen Foote.